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German support for Greece to stay in euro zone rises : poll

People are seen outside a One Euro shop in central Athens, Greece July 24, 2015. REUTERS/Yiannis Kourtoglou

BERLIN: A growing number of Germans want Greece to stay in the eurozone, a poll published Friday found, after Athens reached an agreement with its creditors earlier this month to enact unpopular reforms.

The survey comes after Chancellor Angela Merkel argued that a Grexit would bring "chaos" while Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble defended his idea of Greece taking a five-year "time-out" from the eurozone.

The representative Politbarometer poll for the ZDF public broadcasting television network found that 50 percent want Greece to stay in the eurozone, up from 41 percent in a similar poll taken in early July at the height of the crisis.

The poll also found, however, that 71 percent of the 1,304 surveyed believe that Greece will not be able to avoid bankruptcy even with a third aid program.

Germany is the biggest provider of loans to Greece under its two previous bailout programs.

The poll underlined the high degree of mistrust felt by Germans towards the leftist government of Alexis Tsipras.

Most Germans - 73 percent - do not expect Greece will implement the reform measures as agreed, the survey showed.

The Germans polled were split on the question of whether they agree with the latest bailout package: 49 percent believe it is bad with 48 percent saying it is good.

Some 22 percent said the reform measures that Greece agreed to in exchange for further support are too harsh, 50 percent said appropriate, and 20 percent said they were not harsh enough.

 

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